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U.S. Flag and Missouri State Flag Kit Bond, Sixth Generation Missourian
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May 11, 2005

Bond Works to Boost Highway Bill Funding

Senators Offer $11 Billion Increase to Fund America's Infrastructure

U.S. Senator Kit Bond today announced his latest effort to increase funding in the transportation bill. Bond and others have introduced a plan that would add an extra $11 billion to the bill as the Senate considers the bill this week.

"It is critical we pass this bill if we hope to increase safety, reduce fatalities and decrease congestion on our nation's highways, as well as create more high paying jobs across the country," said Bond. "But at $284 billion, this bill just won't get the job done. I am pleased my colleagues agree that we need to increase funding. We either pay now or pay even more later."

This week, a substitute bill was offered that would boost total spending on the transportation bill to $295 billion over six years, up from $284 billion. The revised bill is now being considered by the Senate and will likely be voted on late this week. The extra funding does not add one penny to the deficit.

Bond, as chairman of the Transportation and Infrastructure subcommittee on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, has been leading the fight in the Senate to reauthorize a new six-year transportation bill.

Bond worked with Environment and Public Works Committee Chairman James Inhofe and Finance Committee Chairman Charles Grassley and Ranking Member Max Baucus to add the funding in the Finance Committee section of the bill.

"The Administration's request falls far short of the investment that is needed to maintain and repair our nation's crumbling infrastructure," said Bond. "Funding our transportation programs at sufficient levels is critical to improve highway safety, alleviate congestion, create jobs and spark economic growth,"

Last year, the Senate passed a six-year bill totaling $318 billion. Bond said that level of funding was needed to modernize America's roads, bridges and transit systems.

Bond stressed that there is a real need to pass a highway bill now. Recent studies show nearly 43,000 Americans lose their lives each year on America's highways and that every $1 billion in new federal investment in highways will create 47,500 jobs.

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